After her awesome performance and her silver medal in World Championship, now Saina Nehwal confesses that she thought of quitting the game of badminton following her bad patch last year.
“I was thinking about quitting (last year) because I thought I was getting irritated with the kind of performances I was giving. I was not happy with the way I was playing. It was not happening, I was not finding out ways to win. It was getting challenging for me because I knew I was a world-class player,” she said in an interview after returning from the world championship.
But what prevented that, according to Saina, is her change of base from Hyderabad to Bangalore under Vimal Kumar.
“It really helped (the change) and everyone can see that. A lot has changed since then. I have changed as a person. As of now I have become World no. 1, won China and India Open, reached the finals of All England and World Championships. All these happened only as I moved to Bangalore.”
Vinay Kumar, as per Saina, proved to be the much-needed motivation in her life that changed the way she looked at her failures.
“Vimal Sir’s influence is the biggest change. I really want to thank him for spending so much time with me in the court and making me believe every day that I am a champion, I can be number one. Even physically I am feeling much better. It’s because, when you get the personal attention you are naturally going to improve. The whole attention is on you. He is working on areas in which I am weak”, she went on adding.
Being a sports person as she is, it was never one of her qualities to back out.
“Losing without a fight was not me. That was not the Saina I knew and only because of that I felt ‘why push yourself like this’. That moment Vimal Sir joined the Uber Cup team after a long time. He worked on my game and I started winning games in Uber Cup and then I won the Australian Open.”
Now that she has won the silver, she feels more confident about her game. “It was disappointing to lose in the finals. But I have to take the positive out of it.”
The ace shuttler has now set the Rio Olympics as the eye of the bird and the nation hopes she retains the no.1 spot making India proud of her like she has been doing ever since.